I must tell you — when you decide to do something creative, and put it all out there for the entire world to see, it can create quite the uncomfortable sensation within you. It’s like you are standing in the middle of a crowded, busy city street, totally naked. All of your flaws just hanging there, or sagging there, as the case may be. Nothing is hidden any more, no longer cleverly concealed by your exterior camoflauge of cute clothes, long t-shirt, pretty jewelry, shoes or makeup. Your every scar, mole, oddly shaped body part, your crooked toe, along with all the things that are beautiful about your body are all right there, totally exposed. Let the brutal scrutiny begin!
One thing I have learned in my almost 60 years on this earth is that no matter what you choose to do with your life, your job, what you say, wear, drive, think, feel, write, draw or cook, there will always be that someone who doesn’t like it, doesn’t support it, is totally against it, or who will seek only to rip you and your dreams apart because they cannot fathom anyone being happy or succeeding in life while they are so completely miserable in their own. Anything you do in life, your creative ventures included, will face this brutality. Some people will like what they see. Some will not. All you need to do is read a few posts of Facebook to see this is true. There’s always that one, isn’t there?
Yes, the positive feedback is much easier to digest and makes us feel good, appreciated and valued. Of course it does! This feedback is very comforting and can keep us plodding along when we’ve had thoughts of just giving up. The negative ones, of course, can make you feel like total crapola, a failure, a dud — if you let them. I’ve been writing in my blog for what, two months now? My purpose in writing it was and is to entertain, make people laugh, smile, or just think a little more deeply. All positive goals, right? Yet, I have received some very negative, non-constructive comments on my posts, such as, “We don’t care,” and “It’s called life. Get over it.”
Well, as I see it, a negative reaction is still a reaction, an acknowledgement that what I wrote affected another human being, right? I could take these comments to heart, close my blog, huddle in a dark corner, hugging my legs toward my chest, my knees supporting my chin, and vow never to write a blog, or even finish my book, never opening myself up to this type of harsh scrutiny and humiliation again. Yes, I could do that. What would that accomplish, really? Why would I allow the 2% of negative comments have more importance or power than the 98% positive ones when I also have the choice to use these acidic, razor sharp comments to spur me forward, continuing towards my dream without regard to these speed bumps and potholes and daggers that are spewed at me by unhappy, negative people.
When you’ve chosen a path in your life, something you have been called to do, your life’s passion, you will know it, without a doubt. Then you will — I mean inevitably — be faced with snags, bumps, road blocks, negativity, and the like, and you may feel that maybe you’re doing the wrong thing after all, pursuing your dream or goal. All of these seemingly dream-crushing things are merely concrete proof that you are on the right path and that you need to do it anyway! It’s during these times that many will give up. Just think. Without those who have continued without regard to opposition or failure, imagine all of the inventions which wouldn’t exist today. The light bulb comes to mind. 10,000 failed attempts. One doggedly determined, and doggedly criticized, inventor who did it anyway.
I am very appreciative of those who have encouraged me to keep writing. My family, my friends, and the strangers who’ve responded to my blog and/or Facebook posts. I thank you all. But, now, I’m also appreciative of you nay-sayers out there, too. You, my non-supporters, also help to keep me reminded — I am on the right track — and, well you just pressed down on the accelerator for my writing, and I thank you!! I must be doing something right and I appreciate your reminders!
What if I write it anyway? Let’s find out!